Concrete Floor ok for run area?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Yard full o' rocks, Jan 21, 2010.

  1. Yard full o' rocks

    Yard full o' rocks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 24, 2009
    Cartersville, Georgia
    We have a "run" that was used for our dog that is 10' x 10', already fenced with a large "dog house" attached. I was thinking of retro-fitting it a bit to make another chicken coop/run out of (thinking especially about a place for broody hens, bachelor pad, chicken hospital, etc.....not everyday use). However, the run area itself is 4" thick concrete. Is concrete ok for chickens to be on? I know they like to scratch around, but they couldn't in this run.

    Its concrete so that it could easily be cleaned before

    Any thoughts?

  2. mamagardener

    mamagardener Chillin' With My Peeps

    That is what my run is, concrete that is fenced in. I put a layer of sand on top, to soften it and give them a chance to scratch around. The sand is easy to clean and it also helps keep puddles from forming on rainy days. I just rake the poop off the top. Just don't use play sand, use something a little coarser with pebbles mixed in. They can use little pebbles for grit even.
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    Chickens like to scratch and they like (I'd say need for lice/mite help and just because they like it) to take dust baths so I would say it is not ideal. However, you are not talking about every day use, it has a great predator-proof start, and the set-up sounds great for your intended uses, so to possibly make it work...

    To overcome the dust bath need, you can build a box, fill it with dirt or sand, and put it in there. Maybe use some suitable container you have on hand. You can overcome this.

    To minimize the scratching problem, I'd suggest enclosing the bottom of the run with something that will hold sand in and put a two or three inch layer of sand. Maybe line the run with 2x4's to hold the sand in. Just make sure there is room under the 2x4 for water to drain (won't take much) and I think you have a pretty good temporary set-up that should be pretty easy on their feet, will stay dry, and be pretty easy to clean. They will still scratch through to the concrete but this will be a lot better than bare concrete.

    Good luck!
  4. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    If it's what you got, it's certainly usable. And being predator-proof is a pretty big plus. Some of my runs are on (preexisting) concrete slabs; I just make sure to keep a GOOD depth of stuff on the ground to cushion it and to give the chickens something to pick/dig/scratch through. I mostly use hay, straw, dead leaves, cut tall grass, that sort of thing, but my run is roofed (albeit somewhat leaky!) and in an open-air run in a less than desert-like climate something inorganic would probably be better (less smell- and fly-prone). Roadbase is good, it is the cheapest aggregate sold, it is a mix of dirt and sand and mixed-size gravel that they use for, well, the base of roads [​IMG] and for building gravel roads. A few tons is pretty cheap, plus all that free exercise you'll get with the wheelbarrow and shovel [​IMG]

    Good luck, have fun,


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